Business

Death. LIFE.

You Continue…

These are the types of messages that I consider happy Friday material these days.

I’ve spoken to Josh and Nolan about the topic and questions below quite a bit, but I’ve never gone public with it.

There are many different reasons why, but as I’m slowly accepting the role of a woman who has a thing or a book to say about death or waking up to live beyond disappointments or any kind of loss (something daily I’m also getting better at understanding how it integrates into my identity work), I know all of it is a good example of how purpose means to learn and stick with integrating our life experience (mainly that which has stung or hurt) and our professional experience into one expression (mainly this: how do we give BACK from both places all the time?).

Our “genius” zone doesn’t solely come from our God-given talents or mastered skills, it comes ~ and ignites ~ when we’ve crashed in life, but not burned…

Loss and the topic of death found me at a young age NOT so that I wouldn’t talk about it, but so that I would (+ so I would feel the freedom to say now, to express NOW what it is that I value/believe/want to say).

What does *your* life experience beg you to say, give or do that you don’t?

Our greatest work in expressing ourselves or our “brand identity” lies in saying what it is that we don’t want to say for fear of it not matching up with what we “do” or for fear of others, not understanding. It’s ok if someone doesn’t understand. We’re not meant to get it all, agree, value or believe it “all.”

Questions are good and not knowing is fine, but keep asking…

Find comfort in the questions, in your questioning. You’re not doing life wrong if you have a lot of them right now, in fact, you now have the chance to do it mostly right for the new, more fully integrated you.

You Continue…

What if you continue?, I’ve asked my guys. What if death is merely a continuation of a different type of you?

What if the gains you make in your development and growth here — in this particular version of life — you take with you to help with your development and growth there? What if what you say, and how much more authentically you express yourself, too, matters for your expression, energy and elevated, wise vibe there?

(I remember vividly the first time I shared something like this with Josh, specifically, many years back): the “work” you’re doing on yourself now isn’t solely for how you want this life to go, it’s how you want what lies beyond to go, so prioritize it.

We act as if we are body/mind/spirit in that order, but we are more like spirit/mind/body. When we forget how important it is to bring in life experience, to allow more of us to speak, is when we feel off, disconnected and when our expression feels stifled…

What if?

You Continue…

So, continue.

Make happiness your business by creating your authentic brand…enjoy your business, enjoy your life! 

Life is good,

michelle-black-sig-md-light
Michelle Ghilotti
Success Designer, Brand Activator & Social Entrepreneur 

The New Rule Airlines Have Made (video, Friendship Experiment)

These sneakers were made for flying. 

The Friendship Experiment continued this last weekend (video below)….

In other news, some airlines have decreased their carry-on size to 22 inches (smaller than the usual carry-on). Check yours out before you travel next! 

In even more news, there are at least three people in your life right now who need to hear you love them (that you have been feeling the need to do or say something different — for them, for *you*, for the relationship). Today — tell them, show them? 

[The original Friendship Experiment livestream from Alaska: bit.ly/2oC4b7V]

Make happiness your business by creating your authentic brand…enjoy your business, enjoy your life! 

Life is good,​

michelle-black-sig-md-light
Michelle Ghilotti
Success Designer, Brand Activator & Social Entrepreneur 

Strategy that Surprised Me

ᗪᗩᖇᒪIᑎG, I’ᗰ ᕼEᖇE ᖴOᖇ YOᑌ 

ᗪᗩᖇᒪIᑎG, I KᑎOᗯ YOᑌ’ᖇE TᕼEᖇE

Over the last four years, I’ve (re)learned that relationships are a success strategy. 

Just as you might workout, eat for your body type and needed energy level or want to get great sleep for your system to feel ready for the goals ahead that day, or how, on the business side, you might invest in a mentor to show you the how-to of next level thinking and doing or of powerful communication for growth, taking time to nurturing relationships is as much the powerful manifestor (the original story from Thursday about taking time to (re) find my passion and what I have learned after loss is here: https://bit.ly/2S4xbm6). 

True relat-ing inside relationships is the creator of an energy that kicks up good stuff in all areas of your life.

I remember when I was first working with Karen Salmansohn on the book about death (really, about life) and telling her that in writing a book on the subject I knew I was also committing to writing a book about the things that happen when we *don’t* have connection or community. 

One which rises to the top today is loneliness (we have a lot of it in society today due to the uber-focus or dependence on both the virtual and digital).

I remember vividly as a middle schooler feeling uncomfortable if I thought someone was lonely. That hasn’t changed today, but the understanding of how togetherness sustains us has. 

The simple calls, visits or vulnerability we make space to honor or give to those we love (or who we would like to understand more deeply) is anything but. 

They’re not simple. They’re powerful igniters of strength, understanding, and humanity that we need to balance out the growth (and wear and tear) of our modern ways and days.

We are social creatures. Our wiring begs for us to be connected — and often. When we aren’t or go long periods without, we suffer.

Although I’ve known the goodness that comes from nurturing relationships or connection intellectually (and benefited from them all throughout my life in beautiful ways), I’ve never felt it (or done as much about it) to the depth, breadth, and width I do or feel it now. And if I have to admit that it took a loss to get me here, then I will.

::: It took loss to get me here :::

It was easy/easier to be a “good” friend, sister or daughter when we didn’t have kids or on the day before the grief journey began or was it? I’ve heard myself joke about this, as have many friends.

At some point, we can snuggle up to the ‘you make time for the things/people you want to make time for’ truth and see and feel schedules accommodate and time/energy magically expand as we start to receive the benefits of a renewed closeness.

After re-evaluating most everything during the journey back to one’s own life after losing a beloved, I realized something else…

As a woman curious about the world, I’ve almost always felt restless between adventures. Loss highlighted that for me more. 

What genuinely started as an experiment (#friendshipexperiment) in connecting or re-connecting with those I love, even apologizing to some for falling off the face of the earth, helped me see (RE-see) that creating tender or unique experiences *for* those I love was not only a worthy goal, but a practice — something now to keep doing over and over. Not only that, I realized that this was one of the very things that would also mitigate the restlessness felt between the adventures of other kinds that I still wanted to take on. 

There’s no substitute to genuine effort or to experiencing something special together that then leads to a conversation that expands the relationship because of what’s been broken down (walls, maybe) and been given (life — always).

A few days ago, my dear Robyn, texted me the podcast episode “How to Listen with Compassion” (I highly recommend it: apple.co/2S9S0Ni) with Thich Nhat Hanh and in it, he shared the following three lovely and very simple mantras. They express the grace, purity, and tenderness that can be found or re-found in relationships should we decide to give to them in new ways:

  • To say to someone when they need you: Darling, I’m here for you (repeat at least 3x).
  • To say to yourself when you, yourself, need someone: Darling I know you’re there (repeat at least 3x).
  • To say to someone whom you’ve hurt: I know you suffer (as a result of my words or actions) and that is why I am here for you (repeat 3x).

He spoke eloquently about what “deep listening” is and how our very presence standing there with someone (genuinely wanting to be there) already brings quick relief; it offers them the “immediate chance to suffer less”. 

He spoke about not being able to go very far without community and I’ve seen both to be true.

In my last share on Thursday, I mentioned that sometimes the best thing we can do to find purpose is to let it find us. Today I add ~ when we find the goodness in our relationships again, as if for the first time (it will feel like the first time), purpose is cheekily there, too. 

And if we *keep* making the effort…keep doing the flying to, the making of the phone calls, the writing of those letters (and, as importantly, a good receiver of all of the above and of someone’s love for *us*), and not just to or with the easiest of our friendships or family relationships, but to our more challenging, we’ll find our purpose there, too.

Make happiness your business by creating your authentic brand…enjoy your business, enjoy your life! 

Life is good,​

michelle-black-sig-md-light
Michelle Ghilotti
Success Designer, Brand Activator & Social Entrepreneur 

Increase the Sexy in Marriage (+ finding your true passion)

Ooof. This man. The cutest. This is a photo from The Creative Heroine Experience I created earlier this year as a give-back for the creative community in LA. 

In attendance, we had actors, entrepreneurs, writers, venture capitalists, performers, artists, producers, authors, social entrepreneurs, activists, directors, healers, students, and this guy ~ he sat in the audience with this same gentle smile he’s woken me up with the last 20 years and it made the eight-hour experience I hosted even more of one — an experience. That’s what it’s all about. Life. Romance. Parenthood. Friendship. Business. (I’ve even added the word to my logo as of late). 

Create that — an experience of it (whatever IT is) and I promise you won’t feel as restless between adventures as you do right now

In the share posted yesterday about taking time to find out what your true passion (if you haven’t read it, you can check it out in my feed below), I shared that sometimes the best thing we can do to find out purpose is to let it find us (and some other stuff about synchronicity, etc). (-:

One thing I left out, but that I’ve talked about before is that 

during a time such as this ~ of your evolving ~ a passionate and sexy idea is to get more involved with your mate (evolved > involved > evolved > involved). 

Create…together. 

For us, creating another baby wasn’t what we ended up deciding to do or try for, but we did create something (else) for a community which was the Greater Good Party (and the How Good’s This podcast as an extension of it, too). 

We also began supporting entrepreneur types with their missions and messages.

When you’re attempting to match the new you whose emerging, passionately creating something new with that one person, with THE one, is a fruitful and genuinely sexy exercise.

In this time of my “pause” (again, check out yesterday’s share) and the evolving of my work (his, too), there’s been increased synchronicity. Inside our creation(s), and generally in life.

I attribute that to a few things or ways of thinking/living, not the least of which is that we are using the love felt in a relationship and in the family for good — for something beyond us. 

We all can use our relationships for that. What we’ve heard is that you may not know what TO do or feel that you have the time, but it’s there for you if you want it. Reach out and we’ll help you find the time AND the idea, xo.

The Greater Good Party has taken on a life of its own and we are as committed as ever to keep it growing with your excitement in other cities. Before and after NYC and SF, we’ve had interest in other cities, too. It’s time that we, too, are making to fit it all in. Next up, outside LA, will be Austin in February (let us know if you live there!).

For those of you in LA who’ve never been to a GGP, and are around early December, comment below or send us a message and we’ll let you know if we have room. We’d love to see you and entertain you as the performers and speakers empower you to take your passion project off the back burner and move it to the front burner).

Happy Saturday to you, Creative Heroine, and here’s to the pause that acts as kindling for purpose and romance!

Mmm romance. 

Make happiness your business by creating your authentic brand…enjoy your business, enjoy your life! 

Life is good,

michelle-black-sig-md-light
Michelle Ghilotti
Success Designer, Brand Activator & Social Entrepreneur